Thematic investing with
BlackRock and iShares

Invest in the long-term trends transforming the way we live and work by investing thematically

Capital at Risk: The value of investments and the income from them can fall as well as rise and are not guaranteed. You may not get back the amount originally invested.

What is thematic investing?

Thematic investing is an approach which focuses on predicted long-term trends rather than specific companies or sectors, enabling investors to access structural, one-off shifts that can chatnge an entire industry. At the centre of BlackRock’s Thematic investing philosophy lies our 5 megatrends: rapid urbanisation, climate change and resource scarcity, shifting economic power and demographic and social change – all driven by technological breakthrough.

A confluence of these global megatrends is prompting structural shifts in many
industries and changing the drivers of company’s earnings.

Why invest in Thematics?

Invest in the future today, through the forces shaping our global economy and society
Efficiently include exposure to megatrends in your portfolio
Designed to capture companies poised for long-term growth across sectors and geographies

Investing for your future by investing in the future

Growing appetite for thematic investing comes from the need to identify future drivers of return (such as technological breakthroughs) from equity investments, which gives them the potential to outperform traditional broad indexes reflecting the movement of the entire market.

Identifying the potential for structural change and investing in expected transformations early (such as the rise of the internet in the 90s) is a key driver  of successful investing. This is particularly important for long-term investors to ensure that their portfolios are positioned for growth opportunities.

Thematic investing at BlackRock 

BlackRock & iShares Thematic suite is positioned to access the long-term effects of these megatrends, offering both index and actively managed funds. Our Thematic Research and Investment Group (TRIG) identifies long-term themes driven by one or more of the 5 global megatrends, as well as working with outside resources to look for trends.

They then apply a repeatable process to decide if the theme is better suited to an index approach (investing in a broad range of companies selected through a set of rules), or an active approach (investing in a select number of companies chosen by a fund manager).

EXPLAINER: An index approach is a passive management style of investing - where a Fund will typically buy all the stock in, for example, the FTSE 100 in the same proportion they represent in the index.

An active approach is when a Fund manager will try to beat the returns of the index to which it relates (its benchmark). The manager will pick stocks to buy and then compare the returns that they make against the benchmark, he/she does not have to buy all the index stocks.

Narrow investment universe Broad investment universe
Low divergence between companies High divergence between companies
Few Initial Public Offerings (IPO) Many IPOs

RISK: There is no guarantee that research capabilities will contribute to a positive investment outcome.

Connect megatrends to investment themes

Click on 1 or more megatrends to see the related themes and funds
Icon for Technological breakthrough
Icon for Demographics & social change
& social change
Icon for Rapid urbanisation
Icon for Climate change & resource scarcity
Climate change &
resource scarcity ?
Icon for Emerging global wealth
global wealth
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BlackRock funds (active)

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Fintech View fund

Future of
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Next Generation
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Nutrition View fund

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iShares funds (index)

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Agribusiness View fund

& Robotics
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Digitalisation View fund

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Electric Vehicles & Driving Technology View fund

EM Consumer
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Global Clean
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Global Timber & Forestry View fund

Global Water View fund

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Inclusion &
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Ways to invest in megatrends with BlackRock and iShares

Use our simple tool to see how our five megatrends connect to investment themes and funds.

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BlackRock's megatrends

Learn more about these powerful, transformative forces that could change the global economy, business and society.
Woman looking into the future

Megatrends research study 2019

Research paper: Learn about the forces shaping our future